Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Genesis Chapter 37-38

Chapter 37:

Israel, the prophet formally known as Jacob has a favorite son, Joseph. He loves Joseph, the baby of the family, so much he gives him a fabulous multi-colored jacket.

Naturally Joseph's brothers are jealous of this special treatment and Joseph's sweet jacket. Joseph goes ahead and makes things worse for himself by having prophetic dreams. He dreams that he will rule over all his brethren. He then blabs and brags about it to everyone. The prophet formally known as Jacob is also concerned about these dreams. He decides that the best course of action when his favorite child is hated by all his brothers is to send him out by himself to check if his brethren are cool with him ruling them.

Joseph's brothers see him from a distance and start scheming. They debate whether to kill their brother. The concubine loving Reuben comes up with a cleaner solution, that they merely leave Joseph in a pit to die rather than actually kill him themselves. So they throw Joseph in a pit and do brunch. As they're brunching, traders heading to Egypt stop by and Judah suggests "hey, why don't we make money from our brother instead? Let's sell him as a slave." Sibling rivalry is really extreme in this book. So they sell their brother into slavery for 20 pieces of silver, then bloody up his gorgeous jacket with goat bits. They show the evidence to Jacob/Israel who is very sad and gullible. The traders sell Joseph to higher up political Egyptians that are apart of the Pharaoh's court.

Chapter 38:

Weird kinky confusing stuff happens in this chapter. Judah (the brother who suggested selling Joseph as a slave) goes to hang out with an Adullamite named Hirah and sees a nice girl named Shuah:

"And he took her, and he went in unto her."

They do that a few times until they have 3 sons: Er, Onan, and Shellah. I'm unclear whether it was consensual or if there was marriage. I think she's just a baby mama. When the sons grow up a bit, Judah goes on down to the biblical wife store and gets his son Er a wife named Tamar. Apparently Lord God didn't particularly like Er and decides to slay him. Because reasons. Judah insists that his second son Onan then marry Tamar to keep the family line. Onan knows that when Tamar has a baby, it will be his brother's and not his and for some reason...doesn't want to mix up the seed?:

"when he went in unto his brother's wife, that he spilled IT on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother." 

So Onan uh...pulled out? God decides to kill him too because God's not a fan of pulling out. Tamar's not having the greatest luck with men. Judah tells Tamar to just hang on and stay a widow until his youngest son Shellah's old enough to marry her. Later on, Judah's wife dies and "Judah was comforted" because Judah is a dick. Judah celebrates his new found bachelorhood by going to a new town with his buddy Hirah. Tamar the widow wife decides to meet up with him. She changes out of her widow's clothes into a veil that a prostitute would wear to...seduce him. It would be nice if someone explained this character's motivations to me. I don't understand most of these people. They just seem to do things. Things just happen. This book is chaos. Is this a nihilist book? Anyway, Tamar goes and hangs out in the road until her father-in-law shows up.

Joseph propositions her with his majorly smooth skills:

"let me come in unto thee"

i.e. "Can I put it in?"

Judah doesn't know he's trying to buy the sexy services of his daughter in law. This book is just like one long Jerry Springer episode. He offers her a goat as payment. I know this is the time of bartering but I find the idea of trying to buy sex with a goat vastly amusing and I hope that one of you someday try to offer a prostitute a goat for his/her services for my sake.

Tamar says that she's going to need some collateral until that goat's delivered on her doorstep. She asks that he give her his staff (teehee), his signet, and his bracelets. He agrees and they do some conceiving. Judah sends the goat to be delivered with his pal Hirah and expects to get his stuff back. The girl cannot be found so Judah goes on a door to door harlot search. Everyone assures him that this is a family friendly environment and therefore harlot free. He eventually finds out that Tamar is the lady in the veil and he insists that she be burned. Men are swell. Tamar's a tricky lady herself and tells everyone that she has his baby in her belly and she has his collateral items to prove it.

Judah kindly leaves Tamar to be a single mother and never sees her again. Tamar has twins. The birth is kind of horror movie creepy. One kid starts to come out, reaching out with one hand, and the midwife puts a scarlet thread around his wrist then the kid decides he's not ready just yet and draws his hand back. The other one comes on out and Tamar names him "Pharez." The noncommittal baby with the scarlet thread finally comes out and she names him Zarah. I was curious if babies reaching their hand out during birth was a thing. I used google images. If you feel like ruining your day a little bit, you can do the same.

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